June 10, 2016 / 5:06 AM / 2 years ago

Hong Kong stocks fall on reports Soros making bearish bets again

HONG KONG, June 10 (Reuters) - Hong Kong stocks fell on Friday as traders took profits on recent gains after reports that billionaire investor George Soros, a noted pessimist on China, was making big, bearish bets again.

Caution ahead of more Chinese economic data on Monday also prompted investors to square positions, while mainland China markets were closed for a long holiday.

The Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday that Soros Fund Management has expressed concern about global economic outlook, China capital flight, reserve depletion, and internal politics.

The Hang Seng index dropped 0.7 percent to 21,152.99 points by the lunchbreak. The Hong Kong China Enterprises Index lost 1.5 percent to 8,890.12.

“Traders squared their position in a lacklustre market and after Soros’ view on the market,” said Steven Leung, a sales director at UOB Kay Hian. “Participants also took to the sideline ahead of the outcome of the MSCI’s decision on whether to include Chinese stocks.”

Stocks in China and Hong Kong have been supported in recent weeks by growing expectations that U.S. market index provider MSCI could add mainland stocks to its emerging market benchmark for the first time. It is due to announce its decision on Tuesday.

China Resources Power led the slide in the main index, losing 4.2 percent. Chinese financial stock adds pressure with Bank of Communications falling fell 2 percent, China Construction Bank sliding 1.7 percent, and CITIC Ltd was down 1.9 percent.

Reporting by Donny Kwok; Editing by Kim Coghill

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